Joaquin Phoenix, That’s All
By: Danny Cacace
“Joker” stars Joaquin Phoenix (“Gladiator,” “Her,” “Signs”), Robert De Niro (“Taxi Driver,” “Goodfellas,” “Casino”), and Zazie Beetz (“Deadpool 2,” “Geostorm”) and is directed by Todd Phillips (“Hangover,” “Hangover Part 2,” “Hangover Part 3,” “War Dogs”).
Joaquin Phoenix plays the titular character Arthur Fleck/Joker, Robert De Niro plays Murray Franklin who is a late night television show host whom Arthur looks up too, and Zazie Beetz plays Sophie Dumond who is Arthur’s neighbor.
Disregarded by society, Arthur Fleck (Joaquin Phoenix) stands alone mistreated by the world outside because he can’t be accepted for who he is. This foreshadows a future where Fleck turns into the clown prince of crime, the Joker.
When I saw “Joker” in theaters, I was amazed by how chilling the score was and how it keeps your heart beating with how tense and dark it is. The whole soundtrack was phenomenal and really breaktaking and perfect for the movie.
For every scene in the movie when the dark music plays in the background, you really feel the vibe the director was trying to bring to this film, which is quite disturbing and thrilling.
This movie has caught a lot of attention due to critics making people believe that this film incites violence. Although, there is one particular scene in the movie where people with clown masks on are protesting against the police may seem as a political uprising to some.
I think of it as people trying to show that there are civilians in society who are not seen because there are those who do not see where they come from, and those people want to be heard and seen.
Even though “Joker” has violent moments throughout, I don’t believe it was actually trying to incite violence. It was showing the kind of character the Joker really is along with giving him an origin story he never had before.
This movie was trying to send a message to the world out of the many hidden but almost blatantly obvious messages. This film offers the message to society that everyone should be loved regardless of who they are.
Director Todd Phillips has said that he took inspiration from films such as “Taxi Driver” and “The King of Comedy” which are both Robert De Niro films and are both crime films, just like “Joker.”
Mental health is another important message that “Joker” uncovers. Arthur Fleck is a person who is a “clown-for-hire,” lives with his mother and he likes to live in his own mind.
This character also has uncontrollable laughter as a condition he suffers from where he laughs in random situations especially in those he shouldn’t laugh in.
“Joker” wants to show the world that people who suffer from any type of mental illness and aren’t given the right love and care they deserve, then the world can fall into chaos as shown in this film where chaos erupts all because of one person. I’m not saying this will happen, but people need to start caring for each other because we’re all human and we’re not perfect by any means and everyone deserves to be loved.
Everyone’s performance in the movie was so on point, and Joaquin Phoenix really gave a fresh spin on the Joker. He really makes you feel for his character while also making you want to be against him at the same time because he acts like a deranged lunatic for a good majority of the movie. The whole movie was phenomenal to me and a true real piece of cinema.
This film checks all the boxes for me in terms of having a really great story with so many messages, an amazing score and the fact that I’m still talking about this movie two weeks after I’ve seen it shows that this film really is worth talking about.
I have to say what I really love about this movie the most is that it keeps you thinking because you really don’t know what to believe and everyone can have their own interpretation of what they think about the movie when it ends. I give Joker an A- and I recommend this movie to anyone especially for those who don’t read comic books, and know nothing about Batman or the Joker.
Go see this movie, you won’t regret it.